The Bulls’ first pick in the 2008 NBA Draft out of Memphis, Rose guided Chicago to some playoff appearances.
His career in Chicago had up and downs after suffering multiple ACL and MCL injuries that changed the trajectory of his career.
A native of Chicago and currently a member of the Detroit Pistons, Rose has career averages of 18.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 5.6 assists per contest.
Chicago is a competitive sports city and they love their Bulls.
On a recent episode of the Scoop B Radio Podcast, I checked in with NBC Sports Chicago’s KC Johnson. While on the show, I asked Johnson if Rose lived in Michael Jordan’s shadow. “I don’t think it had that much with MJ,” Johnson told me.
“Derrick was BELOVED his first few years before the ACL tear. I remember writing and saying many times; This story almost feels to good to be true. Number one overall pick, Rookie of the Year, first All-Star since Jordan, youngest MVP in league history…it was like a storybook tale. And then to me, in terms of Chicago not embracing him, the clear delineation point was when he tore his ACL and chosen to sit out ’12-’13 season. For whatever reason, that touched a nerve with a certain segment of the fan base. I’m not going to say all, because you can’t make blanket statements like that but, certainly a vocal segment of the fan base turned against him for that decision. Which quite frankly, is born out to be correct. I mean, now guys tear ACL’s and sit out the whole season all the time and/ or there’s load management all the time in the NBA and all Derrick was doing that season was listening to his body and his mind and he never felt completely right to come back and try it in the ’12-’13 season.”
Johnson does believe that there were some other factors involved with Rose. “Obviously there was some Public Relations missteps along the way,” he told me.
“He filmed an ad campaign called ‘The Return’ and never returned, warming up or working himself up to a full lather before games may not been the smartest thing to do – because it just wetted the appetite for more for fans that wanted him to come back and never did. But I personally never had a problem with Derrick choosing to sit out that whole season. I mean, who are we to judge another person’s career or body or mind? That’s their career. That’s their body. That’s their mind. So I think that it has way less to do with MJ’s shadow and more to do with the ’12-’13 season.”